Gender-neutral underwear firm TomboyX completed a Series A round of fund raising, and in the process added a board member — Pauline Brown.
Brown — former chairwoman of North America for the LVMH Group — is an investor and senior adviser to TAU, the lead investor in the round. Brown is also an investor and board member of boutique aggregation platform Shoptiques.com. TAU is a New York- and Hong Kong-based investment firm with specialized expertise in global apparel and textile value chains. Other investors in the Series A round include Redbadge Pacific and SBI Investments Korea.
TomboyX has its roots as a women’s shirt firm, according Fran Dunaway, who cofounded the company in 2013 with Naomi Gonzalez.
“I wanted a beautiful shirt like a Robert Graham, but for women. I thought the name Tomboy was cute, so we started a Kickstarter campaign and then realized afterward that we had a brand,” Dunaway said.
The cofounder said the company raised $76,000 in 30 days while on Kickstarter. After putting the shirts into production, and listening to comments from customers, the fledgling firm moved to making boxer shorts in 2014.
According to Dunaway, the gender-neutral shorts are available from extra-small to 4x. The product, which is manufactured in Canada, is sold in just the online channel. She said the new raise will be used to “expand its team, such as getting some very experienced e-commerce professionals, and building out our technology for scale.” The cofounder is auditioning factories in China to see which ones could help it get some scale on the production front.
Two years ago, it stopped making shirts and did a full pivot to the intimates and loungewear space. In addition to underwear, swim and sleepwear are now available. The loungewear line is still in the prototype phase, Dunaway said.
The company is also exploring opportunities with companies that it can collaborate with for pop-up stores, she said.